(a) In addition to Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 413.10) of Title 5 of Part 2 of the Code of Civil Procedure, process may be served upon limited liability companies and foreign limited liability companies as provided in this section.
(b) Personal service of a copy of any process against the limited liability company or the foreign limited liability company by delivery (1) to any individual designated by it as agent, or (2) if the designated agent is a corporation, to any person named in the latest certificate of the corporate agent filed pursuant to Section 1505 at the office of the corporate agent, shall constitute valid service on the limited liability company or the foreign limited liability company. No change in the address of the agent for service of process or appointment of a new agent for service of process shall be effective until an amendment to the statement described in Section 17701.14 is filed. In the case of a foreign limited liability company that has appointed the Secretary of State as agent for service of process pursuant to subdivision (d) of Section 17708.07, process shall be delivered by hand to the Secretary of State, or to any person employed in the capacity of assistant or deputy, and shall include one copy of the process for each defendant to be served, together with a copy of the court order authorizing the service and the fee therefor. The order shall set forth the address to which the process shall be sent by the Secretary of State.
(c) If an agent for service of process has resigned and has not been replaced or if the designated agent cannot with reasonable diligence be found at the address designated for personal delivery of the process, and it is shown by affidavit to the satisfaction of the court that process against a limited liability company or foreign limited liability company cannot be served with reasonable diligence upon the designated agent by hand in the manner provided in Section 415.10, subdivision (a) of Section 415.20, or subdivision (a) of Section 415.30 of the Code of Civil Procedure, the court may make an order that the service shall be made upon a domestic limited liability company or upon a registered foreign limited liability company by delivering by hand to the Secretary of State, or to any person employed in the Secretary of State’s office in the capacity of assistant or deputy, one copy of the process for each defendant to be served, together with a copy of the order authorizing the service. Service in this manner shall be deemed complete on the 10th day after delivery of the process to the Secretary of State.
(d) Upon receipt of the copy of process and the fee therefor, the Secretary of State shall give notice of the service of the process to the limited liability company or foreign limited liability company, at its principal office, by forwarding to that office, by registered mail with request for return receipt, the copy of the process.
(e) The Secretary of State shall keep a record of all process served upon the Secretary of State under this title and shall record therein the time of service and the action taken by the Secretary of State. A certificate under the Secretary of State’s official seal, certifying to the receipt of process, the giving of notice to the limited liability company or foreign limited liability company, and the forwarding of the process pursuant to this section, shall be competent and prima facie evidence of the service of process.
(Added by Stats. 2012, Ch. 419, Sec. 20. Effective January 1, 2013. Operative January 1, 2014, by Sec. 32 of Ch. 419.) California Corporations Code Section 17701.16.